Health Science students travel to the San Antonio AIDS Foundation on World AIDS Day

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Health Science students travel to the San Antonio AIDS Foundation on World AIDS Day

On December 1, 2017, health science interns took a field trip to the San Antonio AIDS Foundation for World AIDS Day.

The trip was to educate the students about HIV/AIDS. The San Antonio AIDS Foundation helps deliver the tools to fight the spread and stigma of the disease.

“I thought it was a very relevant idea,” CNA program instructor Lindsay Leppo said.

The students got to learn about different bacterial infections and viruses. The presentations explained symptoms of HIV and AIDS, along with how the virus can get transmitted.

“HIV and AIDS awareness is not promoted as much as it used to be when Mrs. Nichols and I were growing up,” Leppo said. “I think the kids learned a lot [about HIV and AIDS] that they might not have known before.”

The virus is not specific to certain groups of people. According to HIV.org, more than 1.1 million people in the U.S. are living with HIV today, and 1 in 7 of them do not know it.

“It doesn’t matter if your male or female. You’re a walking breathing human being and that’s the main message, that AIDS doesn’t discriminate it affects all,” health science teacher Monica Nichols said.
Time has passed since the 1990’s and its’ brought better tests and treatments. We now know more about the virus, but that information is not common knowledge. Nowadays, infections and viruses are not really talked about to the younger generation.

“We need to start earlier; kids in middle school and elementary school don’t get all the awareness they need,” Nichols said.

It may not be easy for parents to talk about these topics with their children, but everyone needs to be aware.

“We need to develop curriculum that centers around age appropriate material at each phase. The students need to hear it when they’re in elementary, middle school and high school. Middle school and high school is that high sexual active or experimental phase,” Nichols said.

The San Antonio AIDS Foundation provides HIV prevention and care services. One of their main messages is to bring awareness to the younger generation. It is easier to prevent than to wait for the problem.

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